Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Interesting things to check out

Here are some links that I think are worth sharing.

A really fascinating video of what happens to your body as your baby grows!

I've been searching the Internet for positive birth stories (especially with twins!) and I've found a few good ones. This site has some of my favorites. There are also others to read here.

Ever since I first heard about EC (Elimination Communication) years ago, the idea has fascinated me and I have intended to practice it with my children. I have a couple friends who have done it with their babies with great success, and it just seems like such a great idea. Now that I am expecting twins, I've had to change my vision of motherhood in many ways. I know that it is probably still possible to do EC with twins, it will just be different and much more challenging. Here are some good links to check out about ECing!

Diaperfreebaby
has a lot information to get started.
An article in mothering magazine about one mother's experience with ECing.
Another site with some additional stories and information.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Week 19

I am glad to say that I have been sleeping a little bit better. Thanks to everyone who suggested things for me to try. Some nights are better than others, but at least I've been feeling slightly more rested, which is good.

A couple annoying things that happened this week are that I had one more leg cramp, and a few nose bleeds. These are not big things, but still, not so much fun to deal with.

An exciting thing is that I have been feeling the babies move around A LOT! I haven't felt anything that I'm sure is a kick yet, but definitely lots of movement. I don't think it can be felt from the outside, but I sure can feel them moving around inside! It's actually a very strange feeling, sort of as if something inside my belly is flipping around. Maybe there really are babies in there?

Week 19 belly picture!

I spent some time this week researching the possiblity of a home birth with twins. I spoke with many midwifes in the area and found out that there isn't anyone who does twin home births at this time. Out of the two midwife pratices who would normailly consider doing it, one is on an extended leave, and the other won't do it because they don't have the support of the hospitals in the area. There is one other midwife who would consider it, but she is based out of Worcester, which is about an hour away.

So at least now I know what options I have. I'm a little disappointed that a home birth will not be an option for me, but it's not such a big deal.

I did find out through all my phone calls, that the Midwifery Center would accept me as a patient! They are the other practice besides Hampshre OB (which is who I am with now) that is associated with Cooley Dickinson Hospital, which is where I am currently planning to deliver the twins. I set up a time to meet with the people at the Midwifery Center next week, to see how I like them. I think even if we end up staying with Hampshire OB, it's good to look into other options. The person I spoke with on the phone from the Midwifery Center seemed to think that it wasn't required in their practice that I deliver in the operating room. If that is really the case, I would be tempted to switch to them. We will see.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Twins in my family!

Over the weekend, I was amazed to see all the little crocuses and green shoots poking up from the ground! Today it is snowing. Happy Spring!

On Saturday, Aunt Anne came to visit. She knows a lot about my family's genealogy and while she was here I found out that there is one known set of twins in my family history: my great, great uncles! Roy and Norman Goff, two of my Grandma Boas' mother's nine siblings, were fraternal twins. Apparently they did not look anything alike.

Thanks for coming to visit, Aunt Anne!

On Sunday, Brett and I went to a Meet the Doulas and Birth Professionals Day at Cradle in Northampton. It was a good experience, though very overwhelming. We walked around the small room which was set up with many different tables and we talked to each person. It was loud in the room with so many people talking at once, so we took a few breaks, and I even got a free 15 minute massage! While I was getting my massage, Brett signed me up for the raffle and when I came out, I had won! I chose a gift certificate for a free session of prenatal thai yoga bodywork, and though I'm not exactly sure what it is, it sounds interesting.

I think we learned a bunch about what doulas do, and Brett gathered lots of business cards. I'm glad we had the chance to meet many different doulas who work in this area. There wasn't anyone who we met that I felt completely comfortable with, but at least a few seemed very nice and I wouldn't mind talking to them again to get to know them better.

While we were there, I was reminded yet again how lucky I am to have such a supportive and caring husband. Brett really is amazing and I am so thankful to have him as a partner in my life.

The first crocus to come up in our front yard this weekend!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Week 18

Ugh. Sleep continues to elude me. Sometimes I can't get comfortable, sometimes it's bad dreams that wake me up, and sometimes I just simply cannot seem to fall asleep. Amber suggested that I take something like Benadryl to help me sleep, but I really don't want to. Any other thoughts, anyone? I would be especially interested to hear if anyone has any ideas about how I could avoid having bad dreams.

Yesterday was the warmest day we've had in a long time. It felt like summer time! I wore flip flops when I went outside.

According to the baby books, this week the twins should measure about 5 inches long (head to rump) and each weigh close to 7 ounces! They can swallow now and they each have their very own finger prints (even if they are identical).

I think my belly is getting noticeably rounder and I feel like my belly button is getting, "less deep".

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy Pi Day!

We had our monthly prenatal checkup this morning with Hampshire OB. This time we met Dr. Laughingwell, who is the newest doctor in the practice. He was younger than Dr. Sprong, (the first doctor we met) maybe in his mid-thirties, calm and knowledgeable, though without much personality. But we did like him, and he gladly answered our questions and listened to the babies' heartbeats. Both girls still have strong heartbeats and it was reassuring to hear them. I haven't felt any kicks yet (at least not that I'm sure of), so sometimes I wonder if they are still alright in there.

So far I've gained a total of 8 pounds, which they said was normal, and my blood pressure, glucose levels and protein are good. I also got blood drawn, for an AFP test, which is one of the second trimester screening tests. For the first time that I can remember, I didn't turn away when they stuck the needle in my arm. It wasn't actually on purpose that I looked, I just forgot to look away. I'm so much braver about needles than I used to be!

Dr. Laughingwell also told me that it really is fine to sleep on my back if it's comfortable, despite what all the books say (absolutely DON'T lie on your back after 16 weeks!). He said that the main idea is to not stay in any one position for hours at a time.

On Saturday, Brett and I took our second tandem ride of the season! Our first stop was the entrance to the bike path on Bates St., to help the Snow Squad clear the snow and ice off of the path, making it passable for cyclists from Bates Street to Damon Road. This section is a part of Brett's daily commute, so we were very excited to be able to help get it clear!

Our second stop was the Winter Farmer's Market and then lunch at Local Burger before heading back home. Our total ride for today was 9 miles.

Outside the Farmer's Market, Brett closes up our bag full of carrots, potatoes, spinach, and fresh bread. Our bike was longer than usual today with two snow shovels strapped on the back!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Week 17

(Written by Brett)

This whole process is so exciting to me! We are both amazed that it's already been so many weeks (15 weeks since conception, end of Week 17 by the books). It's all flying by pretty quickly.

Sadly, Jenny still isn't sleeping well. She slept well enough a couple of nights this week, but that's not much. Some days she is able to get a nap in, or at least some good resting. At least her cough is still (slowly) lessening. She is amazing, though. She stays in decently good spirits, she stays fairly busy around the house, and Monday afternoon she hauled many, many buckets of water out of the basement at our Springfield house, due to all the melting and rain we've had. Perhaps she worked a little too hard that time, because she was sore for a day or two after. I do wish that she were able to lose the cough and sleep better, because then she'd be able to enjoy this time more.

Today we biked to the Smith College Botanic Garden, to see the Spring Bulb Show! This was our first time on the tandem since November. Our round trip ride was about 5 miles, and all went smoothly. While it wasn't sunny, the temperatures were in the mid 40's and we pedaled back into our driveway just as the raindrops began to fall. A great first ride of the season!

There is still snow on the ground, but Spring is in the air!

The Spring Bulb Show is always one of the highlights of March.

Next week, we'll have another appointment with the local doctors. Since the practice has six doctors total, we'll probably get to meet a different one each appointment for a while. The whole process is pretty real now and we are looking forward to being parents, but sometimes we just wonder what we're getting ourselves into. Big changes in our life are coming, and change can be scary. Luckily, we have each other for support and we know we're going to be just fine.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Week 16

Week 16 belly picture!

Now that we know we're having two girls, I spent a while last night looking at lists of girl names. Oh, so many choices! Brett and I have one name that we like, but other than that, nothing has jumped out at us. It's fun to think about though, and I bet we will have names picked out by the time they are born.

I have slept better a couple nights this week, and not so well a couple of nights. I have found that an extra pillow between my legs seems to help me stay comfortable for longer. Last night I woke up with a leg cramp, which wasn't fun, but it went away quickly. A special thanks to Selena for getting me to go swimming today. I really didn't feel like going, but it wasn't so bad once we were there, and I'm sure that the exercise was good for me.

We got to visit with Alex, Julie and 4-month-old baby Jackson last weekend! They passed along to us a bunch of baby clothing, books and an Arms Reach Co-Sleeper that they no longer need. I had fun moving our bedroom around and setting up the co-sleeper to see how it looks/fits into the room. We're still not sure yet of our plans for sleeping arrangements once the babies arrive, but this option might work out well.

Thanks for all the great baby things, Alex and Julie!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

It's a GIRL!!

We found out this morning that the twins are both GIRLS!!!!

Today was our 16 week ultrasound appointment at Baystate. We scheduled it for early in the morning this time so that Brett would be able to come. Also, Kathy, Brett's mom, was able to make the appointment! It was fun to have her along.

We were one of the first patients of the day, and this time the ultrasound tech was very friendly and happily answered our questions and explained what she saw on the screen. The babies still have strong heartbeats (147 and 152) and they now weigh 5 ounces each!

This was the longest ultrasound I've had so far. It lasted about half an hour and we got to see LOTS of pictures of both babies. They checked all of their organs and bones, looking especially closely at their hearts. The doctor said that they were both "unremarkable", in a good way! They also checked my cervix, which was closed, so that's a good thing, too. Both babies have all five fingers on their little hands, and were moving around for the camera like crazy. Two baby girls, WOW!